What to Wear for Passport Photos

When it’s time to take your passport photo, choosing the right outfit can be tricky. 

After all, it’s not just about looking good but also ensuring your photo complies with official requirements. So in this post, I’ll walk you through the dos and don’ts of selecting the perfect attire for your Australian passport photo before you step in front of the camera.

Let’s make a start:

What to Wear for Passport Photos

General Photo Guidelines

Before we discuss passport photo attire, let’s first look at the essential requirements for passport photos courtesy of the Australian Passport Office:

  • The photographs must measure between 35mm to 40mm in width and 45mm to 50mm in height.
  • Photos must be high-quality, colour gloss prints taken within the last six months.
  • The image should be clear and focused, free from marks or red-eye.
  • A plain white or light grey background is essential to provide a contrast to your face.
  • The lighting must be uniform, devoid of shadows or reflections, to accurately depict your skin tone.
  • Your face should be directly facing the camera without any tilt.
  • Hair must not cover the face, ensuring the edges of the face are visible.
  • Keep eyes open and mouth closed.
  • Glasses shouldn’t be worn.
  • A neutral expression is required—not smiling, laughing, or frowning—as it facilitates the easiest matching by border systems.

Where can you get a set of two compliant passport photos?

At post offices, large chain stores with printing facilities, camera stores,  some pharmacies, and chemists, or go for a passport photo tool if you’re feeling tech-savvy. The latter is more convenient since you can take your picture at home using your phone and have the printouts delivered to your doorstep.

With this, it’s time to move on to choosing your outfit.

What to Wear for Passport Photos

What to Wear: Dos

The essence of dressing for an Australian passport photo lies in simplicity and elegance.

Choose Neutral Colours

Opt for solid, neutral colours like black, white, or grey. These hues ensure your face remains the focal point without causing distractions.

Subtle Patterns and Textures

Subtle patterns or textures are fine but shouldn’t detract from your facial features. Keep it minimal to maintain focus on your face.

Consider the Neckline

V-necks or round necks are preferable as they frame the face nicely. Avoid necklines that are too high or too embellished.

Layer for Depth

Adding a blazer or cardigan can add depth to your photo. Choose layers that adhere to the neutral colour rule and avoid busy patterns.

What to Avoid: Don’ts

Just like some colours and patterns work better, there are some absolute no-nos when it comes to passport photo attire.

Bright and Fluorescent Colours

Avoid wearing bright or fluorescent colours. These can cause reflections and distract from the face, potentially leading to photo rejection.

Busy Patterns and Logos

Steer clear of busy patterns, logos, or slogans on clothing for the same reason as above.

Headwear and Large Accessories

Except for religious purposes, headwear should be avoided. Large earrings or necklaces can obscure the face or reflect light, affecting the photo’s quality.

What to Wear for Passport Photos

Practical Tips for a Successful Passport Photo

Preparing for your passport photo goes beyond just selecting the right outfit. 

Here are some practical tips to ensure your photo complies with Australian standards and presents you in the best possible light:

  • Natural hair and makeup: Keep your hair and makeup natural. Your hairstyle shouldn’t cover your eyes or face. Aim for a look that represents your daily appearance.
  • Neutral facial expression: Keep your face relaxed, eyes open, and mouth closed. It ensures a clear and straightforward representation, which is crucial for identification purposes.
  • Correct posture and positioning: Sit or stand straight, with your shoulders even. Face the camera directly, ensuring your entire face is visible and well-lit.

Stacking It All Up

There you have it.

A comprehensive look at what to wear for Australian passport photos to ensure compliance and a flattering image. 

Now, if you have any questions or comments, drop them in the comment section below.

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What to Wear for Passport Photos
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Hey, I'm Nicola!

I am a travel + food blogger on a mission to discover the best destinations & dishes in the world. Thanks for joining the adventure!


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